The hosts came out with a high press as they looked to surprise Monterrey, but they couldn’t do much to trouble Marcelo Barovero in goal. The pressure did keep the Rayados from mounting any incisive attacks of their own, however, despite attempts by Dorlan Pabón and Avilés Hurtado to get the offense into gear.
The second half got increasingly chippy, with more fouls than goal-scoring opportunities. It wasn’t until the 65th minute that Monterrey found a clear chance as Miguel Layún took a free kick. But Alianza keeper Rafael García made the save.
As time wore on, both teams looked to grab a late victory, but the breakthrough refused to come, with more shots going high or wide than testing the goalkeepers.
The 0-0 draw means next week’s second leg will be winner-takes-all; another goalless draw would send the game to penalties, while a draw with scoring would advance Alianza on the away goals tiebreaker.
Alianza: Víctor Rafael García, Iván Mancia, Henry Romero, Jonathan Jiménez, Ruben Marroquin, Herbert Sosa (Marvin Monterrosa 63′), Issac Portillo, Narciso Orellana, Bladimir Díaz (Irving Herrera 76′), Diego Benítez (Juan Carlos Portillo 68′), Óscar Cerén.
Monterrey: Marcelo Barovero, Nicolás Sánchez, César Montes, Jesús Gallardo, Miguel Layún, Avilés Hurtado (Maximiliano Meza 75′), Jonathan González, Carlos Rodríguez (Celso Ortiz 63′), Ángel Zaldívar (Adam Bareiro 82′), Rodolfo Pizarro, Dorlan Pabón.